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PHOTO REPORT: Universal Orlando Resort 7/1/22 (New Chocolate Frog Wizard Card, Independence Day Decor, Banners Removed From Entrance of Monsters Cafe, and More)

Welcome to another exciting day here at the Universal Orlando Resort. We’re ready to kick off the holiday weekend with a visit to the parks, so let’s get started and see what’s new at Universal Studios Florida first.

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It’s looking like a very quiet morning. For a Friday at the start of the holiday weekend, we were surprised it was so quiet.

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The entrance to the park is decorated with red, white, and blue bunting. The park is having a celebration on Fourth of July and we’re looking forward to it.

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Decorative lighting has been added around the grassy area in front of the stage. There will be live music, a DJ, and more fun activities for the 4th of July. You can find more details in our post here.

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Some funky new Minion decor has been added at the Universal Studios Store. The tie-dye colored signs have been added to the displays above the Minions merchandise.

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This tie-dye looking fudge seems fitting for the release of “Minions: Rise of Gru”. These are tutti frutti and sherbet flavored fudges and look delicious.

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The banners over the entrance of Monsters Cafe have been removed. We can hear work taking place behind the wall, including some very loud crunching sounds. Rest in peace, Monsters Cafe. If you’re feeling nostalgic, take a tour in our post here.

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Another mysterious clue has appeared on the desk at the exit of the Tribute Store. These are starting to build up a lot of suspense for this year’s Halloween Horror Nights event.

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There has been no word on when we can expect to see Revenge of the Mummy to reopen, but they have slowly started to return the Monsters Tribute Store back into Sahara Traders. The store still contains monster merchandise, but the Dracula photo op and coffins have disappeared and the old merchandise displays have been brought back.

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Cheers to 40 years, E.T. This new shot glass can be found in the Film Vault. Some anniversary merchandise has slowly been arriving late, but we’re still excited to see it.

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Inside the Film Vault, the “JAWS” Loungefly are fully stocked, including the elusive mini backpack. You can take a closer look at these items in our post here.

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A brand new Chocolate Frog Wizard Card is now available. This 2022 collector’s card can be found in specially marked boxes. Look for the golden sticker on the packaging. Chocolate Frogs are $13 each or 3 for $33, which is a great opportunity to try the new dark chocolate Chocolate Frog.

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Painting continues on the exterior of the former Barney Shop. We believe this is going to be a new meet and greet location for Shrek and Donkey.

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The Blues Brothers are always great, but we love to catch a show with an American Sign Language interpreter. The interpreters at Universal do a great job and we love to see it! If you’re interested, you can watch a full show of Grinchmas with sign language interpreter on our YouTube channel.

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It’s almost spooky how quiet the parks are today. Lines are short and it feels very calm. We’re not complaining, though.

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The Transformers meet and greet was having some issues and wasn’t open this morning. We heard there were some problems with the door, but it would hopefully be fixed later in the day.

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Squidward was chilling by himself in SpongeBob StorePants. We always stop to visit our friends around the park when there’s no wait.

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Over at Islands of Adventure, we were excited to find a short line for Green Eggs and Ham. That doesn’t happen too often, so this might be a good time to grab some Carnitas Tots.

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Only a 10 minute wait for the High in the Sky Seuss Trolley Train Ride. This is one of our favorite rides in the park.

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Do you have a favorite spot to take a nap? When the crowds are low like this, anywhere is perfect for a little rest!

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It’s hard to believe it’s the start of a holiday weekend. These crowds are perfect.

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It’s the middle of the day and there’s only a 10 minute wait for the Hogwarts Express. This is just too perfect.

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Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure didn’t look very busy, but there was a 150 minute wait. They might be operating with a lower capacity, but the wait time sounded unusually high.

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Please enjoy some photos of Jurassic Park with low crowds. For being the middle of the afternoon, there weren’t even long lines for food.

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We did find one long line. The line for Raptor Encounter stretched our of the queue and down the pathway. It’s definitely worth waiting to meet a live raptor, though.

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The water blasters in Toon Lagoon no longer take tokens. The machines are now individually set up with a credit card reader so you can pay to blast guests on Dudley Do-Right’s Rip Saw Falls and Popeye and Bluto’s Bilge-Rat Barges.

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Toon Lagoon has some minor refurbishments happening around the land. It’s good to see this maintenance taking place here.

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That’s all for this visit to the Universal Orlando Resort. Thanks for joining us around the parks today. We’ll be back again soon, so be sure to keep following Universal Parks News Today for more updates.

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